I have never tasted or cooked Swiss chard in my entire life. I can’t believe I’m 32 years old and there are still so many foods I haven’t even tried yet!
It was kind of an odd arrival at how testing out this recipe came to be, but I’m sure glad it did. Our three year old, Gavin, has a weekly “share” letter for his pre-school class. Each week, the kids are supposed to bring in something that starts with the assigned letter and share it with the class.
Well, about a month ago, we started brainstorming to select the most unique, unexpected share items ever. Some weeks (more than others) we’re able to come up with pretty cool ideas. This week, I just sort of ran out of time.
It’s been insanely hectic and I didn’t find out “s” was the letter until very shortly before we had time to come up with something. I was at the grocery store, and Swiss chard was what popped up.
Since a fresh piece of Swiss chard itself is kind of boring, I thought it would be more appropriate to accompany the single stalk of fresh Swiss chard with a yummy dish for the kids to sample.
I woke up early to try out this recipe…with no idea whether or not it would turn out. But how can you go wrong with bacon, garlic, and butter?! It was delicious – tasted like collard greens, but prettier!
I highly doubt a bunch of three year olds will be jumping at the chance to try this (if they are anything like Gavin), but at least they’ll have the opportunity to taste it if they want.
Sautéed Bacon Garlic Swiss Chard Recipe
Prep: 15 mins
Cook: 15 mins
Total: 30 mins
Yield: 6 servings
- 1 bunch Swiss chard (about 7 pieces)
- 6 pieces of bacon
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 1/4 onion, chopped
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 1/2 cup chicken broth
- 1 tablespoon tomato paste
- 1/2 tablespoon lemon juice
- 3/4 teaspoon garlic powder
- 3/4 teaspoon onion powder
- 1/4 teaspoon seasoned salt
- 1/4 teaspoon paprika
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
- Separate leaves from stalks and rise both.
- Chop up stalks and rough chop the leaves.
- Place a large pan over medium heat, and add chopped bacon. Cook to your desired crispness.
- Remove the bacon from the pan, but LEAVE the bacon fat.
- Add butter to the bacon fat. Then add the onion and garlic. Stir until they are sauteed to desired firmness.
- Add chicken broth, tomato paste, lemon juice, and seasonings. Stir until evenly combined.
- Add Swiss chard leaves and stalks. Stir everything together. Reduce heat to medium low, cover with a lid, and let simmer for 5 mins.
- Add the bacon back in and mix everything together and serve. (Keep on low heat until ready to serve.)
My Recipe Notes:
Chopping Swiss Chard
Swiss chard has the most vibrant, beautiful colors and it’s really easy to chop up. After separating the stalk from the leaves, I chopped up the stalk exactly like I would celery. It has a very similar texture and consistency as celery, but it isn’t quite as thick.
The recipe called for “rough chopping” the leaves. I wasn’t exactly sure what this was, but I basically cut up each leaf horizontally into 5 equal sized pieces. You can stack all the leaves and cut them together.
Then I took those stacks and cut them in half. If you desire smaller finished pieces, simply chop them up again. The leaves do wilt and become smaller in size when you sauté; however, depending on how large your leaves are, you may want a smaller chop.
Cooking Steps in Photos
Like pretty much everything, I prefer bacon on the less cooked / less crispy side. I pulled out my bacon as soon as it was thoroughly cooked, but still chewy. To me, this is how bacon should always be…both in whole strips and also as an ingredient. It reminds me of my absolute favorite bacon fried rice from The Loft.
After adding the butter, garlic, and onion, your entire home will start to smell deliciously amazing! As soon as you throw that butter in, your pan will bubble up and fizzle…then throw in the garlic and onions to saute. While cooking, nothing beats the smell of this aromatic combo!
When adding the chicken broth, tomato paste, lemon juice, and seasonings, the tomato paste will be a little lumpy and seasonings clump to the bottom. Give the pan a nice stir to make sure all the ingredients combine evenly.
Throwing in the swiss chard leaves and stalks will fill up your pan nicely. After you keep stirring for a minute, the leaves will saute down and begin to wilt into that nice texture resembling collard greens.
Once everything is combined: reducing the heat to medium low, covering the pan and allowing to simmer for about 5 mins will give you this beautiful dish that is ready to serve. You can keep it in the pan uncovered on low until you are ready to serve it up and enjoy!
Sauteed Bacon Garlic Swiss Chard…my first time ever tasting this leafy beauty, and it was finger lickin’ good!
Adapted from recipe found at maggiecourseyphotography.blogspot.com.